Back when I started home brewing, the first beer that I decided to do was a pumpkin beer. I can’t tell you the exact reason why I went with that specific style, but I think it was because I got caught up in the pumpkin craze currently sweeping across America.
As it turns out, going with the pumpkin was a poor choice as a first beer as it was a little too complicated for what I was capable of doing at the time. Since that time, I’ve brewed a number of different styles of various difficulty levels and have finally got a grasp on the pumpkin ale style.
Since pumpkin ale was a difficult choice for a beginner, I have since come up with a recipe specifically for the first time home brewer.
Say for instance you just bought yourself a new brewing kit. You brake it open and get excited to brew. This would be the recipe I would suggest to you.
Brown ale is perfect for a first time home brewing recipe for a number of reasons. First, it’s extremely easy to make. There’s not much to making a brown ale as it contains very little hops, one type of malt usually, and a very simple “bake and wait” process.
Second, brown ale is very unique from the typical American style lager that is so readily available and popular. It’s brown, very malty, and yet still very drinkable.
Third, brown ale doesn’t have a very long fermentation process like other complicated beers such as Double IPA or Belgian Tripel. This is good when you are just starting out because it’s kind of a pain when you have to wait months and months to find out your skills aren’t up to par. Just a couple weeks and you can see if you need improvement or not.
Brown Ale Recipe
Here’s the ingredients you’ll need to brew a brown ale:
- Put two gallons of water into your pot and bring it to about 155 degrees.
- Steep the grains in a grain bag for 20 minutes.
- Remove and discard the grains.
- Bring your pot to a boil.
- Remove your pot from the heat and add the Light and Dark Malt Extract. Stir the Malt Extract until it is dissolved.
- Bring the pot back to a boil and throw in the Willamette hops. Boil for 60 minutes.
- Remove the pot from the heat and bring the temperature down to 70 degrees. You can either use a wort chiller or place the pot in an ice bath to lower the temp.
- When it’s cooled, pour your wort into your fermentation bucket.
- Pour water into the bucket to bring it up to 5 Gallons.
- Use your hydrometer to take your Original Gravity reading.
- Pour your yeast into the bucket.
- Put the lid on the bucket and secure the airlock. Pour some water in the airlock.
- After about a week, rack your beer to a secondary fermenter.
- After two weeks in the secondary, siphon the beer on top of 5 oz of priming sugar in the bottling bucket.
- Use a bottling wand and some tubing to bottle.
- Wait about 2 weeks to drink.
As you can see, this is pretty easy stuff. After you finish this recipe, you’ll be asking yourself, “Is that all there is to it?”
You can take it to the next level with partial mash recipes and all grain recipes. You could also keep it at the extract brew level and still make fantastic quality beer! I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised at how good this beer will taste.
As always, enjoy!
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